After a long season of drought, the plains are green and full of life again. Belt, an orphaned lion cub, is enjoying his adoptive porcupine family but beginning to wonder what it means to be a real lion. Tricked by the bully Mohawks, Belt falls into a hole and is captured by two-feeters who cart him away to the city. After he is saved from a fire by a two-feeter with a golden mane, he finds himself in a stone palace ruled by the wise lion, Nebu. Years later, the appearance of a familiar golden-maned stranger tests Belt’s courage and all that he has learned from Nebu.